Systematic lightweight construction, excellent comfort and a broad portfolio of high-end technologies: Audi has given its A8 flagship a refreshing update. The engines are even more powerful and efficient, while new assistance systems and the innovative Matrix LED headlights provide for an added level of composure.
At launch in April 2014, Audi South Africa will offer a full diesel model range for the Audi A8. The 3.0 TDI quattro and 4.2 TDI quattro will be available in both normal and long-wheelbase variants. May 2014 will see the launch of the all new Audi S8 and the A8 W12 6.3 long-wheelbase model. The Audi A8 Security will be offered later in 2014 in both 4.0T FSI and W12 6.3 versions.
The new Audi A8 places Audi among the innovation leaders in the luxury segment. One great strength of the sedan is its lightweight construction. The body is made almost entirely of aluminium; an Audi Space Frame (ASF) design, it weighs just 231 kilograms. The length (5.14 metres), wheelbase (2.99 meters), width (1.95 metres) and height (1.46 meters) remain unchanged from the outgoing model. The A8 L gains an additional 13 centimetres in both length and wheelbase. Additional noise damping measures reduce the already low interior noise level even further.
The dynamic design of the Audi A8 has become much more expressive. The engine hood, the Singleframe grille and the front bumper are more sculptured while the lower edge of the headlight units has straightened. Xenon plus headlights are standard on all 3.0 TDI quattro and 4.2 TDI quattro models, with full LED headlights standard on the S8 4.0T quattro model.
Audi also offers optional headlights featuring Matrix LED technology, which sets new benchmarks with respect to design and technology. With these headlights, the high-beam comprises 25 individual light-emitting diodes per unit that can be switched on and off or dimmed individually depending on the situation. Matrix LED headlights are standard on the upcoming A8 W12 6.3 L model.
This enables the headlight system to react extremely precisely to other vehicles while always brightly illuminating the road. Additional features of the new headlights are the intelligent cornering light, new-look daytime running lights and dynamic turn signals. The lighting system in the A8 uses predictive route data from the navigation system to adjust the distribution of light in response to the current driving situation. In combination with the standard Navigation plus with MMI touch, the system recognizes route data contained in the navigation system, such as curves and road classifications.
The LED lamps at the rear of the new Audi A8 have also become flatter. In all models except the S8, the redesigned bumper houses two rectangular tailpipes. New chrome strips and high-gloss black window frames round off the differentiating design details.
The engines: more power and efficiency
Audi offers the A8 in the South African market with two petrol and four diesel engines. These are the highly efficient 3.0 TDI quattro clean diesel with 190 kW and 580 Nm of torque, and the 4.2 TDI quattro clean diesel, which produces 283 kW and 850 Nm. Both these engines are available on the normal and long-wheelbase models and require ultra-low sulphur diesel. Audi is the only manufacturer to offer a V8 diesel engine in the South African D-segment.
Only available in normal wheelbase will be the Audi S8 of which its performance figures remain unchanged from the previous model. The 382 kW engine produces 650 Nm of torque with an acceleration time of 4.2 seconds. Paired with quattro all-wheel drive, its sonorous 4.0 TFSI has an average fuel consumption of 10.1 litres per 100 kilometres, corresponding to 235 grams CO2 per kilometre. The Cylinder on Demand system, which deactivates four of the eight cylinders under partial load, plays a key role in the efficiency of this model. Active Noise Cancellation System (ANCS) is also available in the Audi S8, which uses precise anti-phase noise to compensate for intrusive noise in the cabin while operating on four cylinders while active engine mounts dampen vibration. The chassis and many body details reflect the sporty positioning of the S8.
Joining the Audi A8 line-up in May 2014, the top-of-the-line model is the luxuriously equipped Audi A8 L W12 quattro. Its petrol engine is particularly short and lightweight thanks to its W layout. Displacing 6.3 litres, it produces 368 kW and 625 Nm of torque. It also boasts best-in-class fuel consumption of 11.7 litres per 100 kilometres, corresponding to 270 grams CO2 per kilometre. It also has the Cylinder on Demand system that was designed specifically for this engine which at low load, it deactivates the fuel injection and ignition for six cylinders. As per the Audi S8, the ANCS ensures excellent acoustic comfort.
All Audi A8 models are equipped standard with a fast and smooth-shifting, eight-speed tiptronic transmission. The electronically controlled automatic transmission is paired with quattro permanent all-wheel drive. Audi also offers an optional sport differential for the rear axle, which distributes the power between the rear wheels as needed. The sport differential is standard in the S8 and the A8 4.2 TDI quattro clean diesel.
The sedan owes its sporty character in large part to the sophisticated chassis. The Audi drive select system, which varies the function of various technology modules, is standard. It also controls the adaptive air suspension with adaptive damping. Audi offers the air suspension as standard on all Audi A8 models.
Hand-built character: The interior of the Audi A8
The interior of the Audi flagship dazzles with its elegant lines and generous spaciousness. All components in the new A8 have been carefully chosen and processed with the utmost precision. Each of the quality details documents the hand-built character of the interior.
The Audi design selection offers a pre-selection of exclusive materials and colours for the interior. They are conceived, chosen and created by AUDI AG designers based on the latest pioneering trends in colours and materials. Stylish combinations of colours and materials available nowhere else ensure the utmost in exclusivity. Audi design selection also makes it easier for customers to configure the interior. Every Audi design selection customer also benefits from a premium range of additional equipment options. Every Audi design selection in the new Audi A8 features Valcona leather and can be pre-selected on order. The Audi exclusive range offers additional individualization options for particularly discerning customers.
As is typical for Audi, the new A8 features exemplarily clear controls despite the abundance of functions. Taking centre stage is the MMI control element on the centre console. MMI navigation plus also includes a touchpad and is standard on all Audi A8 models. The driver draws characters on the pad (MMI touch) to control numerous navigation and multimedia functions.
For more composed driving: the assistance systems
Driving is even more composed with the optional assistance systems. The adaptive cruise control with Stop & Go function is coupled with an expanded version of the standard Audi pre sense basic safety system. The same applies to Audi side assist. The new, optional head-up display projects important data in the driver's field of vision on the windshield. The optional night vision assistant can now also recognize larger animals in addition to pedestrians.
Audi connect including car phone is available as standard across the range. It uses an integrated UMTS module to connect the new A8 to the Internet. Passengers can browse the internet and e-mail freely via a WLAN hotspot. For the driver, the system delivers the tailored online services from Audi connect to the car, such as Google Earth and Google Street View.
From a multimedia perspective, the Rear Seat Entertainment system is standard on all long-wheelbase models and includes two LED displays, Bluetooth headphones and a DVD changer with separate hard drive for storing music and video files.
The following equipment is available as standard on the Audi A8 3.0 TDI quattro:
- 19-inch alloy wheels
- Audi connect for on-line services
- 360 degree camera for Audi Parking System
- Audi drive select with Efficiency Programme
- Adaptive air suspension
- Audi music interface
- Xenon plus headlights
- Audi MMI 3G Navigation
- Audi touchpad interface
- Bose sound
- Four-zone climate control
- Burr Walnut inlays
- Electrically operated front seats with memory function
- Heated front seats
- 3-spoke multi-function steering wheel with shift paddles
- Electrically operated steering column
- Keyless entry
- Power closing doors
- LED interior lighting
- Electrically operated glass sunroof
- Electrically operated tailgate
- Electric sunshade for rear window
- Tyre pressure monitor
- Rear seat entertainment system (LWB only)
- Panoramic sunroof (LWB only)
In addition to the above equipment, the A8 4.2 TDI will have the following standard equipment:
- Audi dynamic steering
- Rear sports differential
- 20-inch wheels from quattro GmbH
- Comfort front seats with 22-way adjustment
- Front seats with ventilation and heating
Pricing for the Audi A8 range is as follows, inclusive of all taxes and the standard 5-year/100 000 km Audi Freeway Plan.
- Audi A8 3.0 TDI quattro tiptronic: R 1,101,500
- Audi A8 4.2 TDI quattro tiptronic: R 1,390,000
- Audi A8 3.0 TDI LWB quattro tiptronic: R 1,257,500
- Audi A8 4.2 TDI LWB quattro tiptronic: R 1,545,500
Pricing and specification details for the Audi A8 W12 6.3 quattro and Audi S8 will be released closer to the launch of these models in May 2014.
The Audi A8 is only available from select Dealers in South Africa. The following Audi Dealers in South Africa are accredited Audi A8 Dealers:
- Audi Centre Airport
- Audi Centre Arcadia
- Audi Centre Bruma
- Audi Centre Centurion
- Audi Centre East Rand
- Audi Centre Fourways
- Audi The Glen
- Audi Centre Hatfield
- Audi Centre Johannesburg
- Audi Centre Menlyn
- Audi Centre Northcliff
- Audi Centre Rivonia
- Audi Centre Sandton
- Audi Vereeniging
- Audi Centre West Rand
- Audi Centre Mbombela
- Audi Centre Middelburg
- Audi Centre Trichardt
- Audi Centre Durban
- Audi Centre Pietermaritzburg
- Audi Centre Pinetown
- Audi Centre Umhlanga
- Audi Centre Cape Town
- Audi Claremont
- Audi Centre N1
- Audi Centre Somerset West
- Audi Centre Bloemfontein
- Audi Centre East London
- Audi Polokwane
- Audi Centre Port Elizabeth
- Audi Centre Rustenburg
- Audi Centre Windhoek